We get this question a lot. Once you’ve invested in a beautiful wood floor, it can last a long, long time with proper maintenance.
Here is what we recommend to our customers:
* Vacuum (with a soft brush attachment) or sweep your floor regularly to prevent scratching. We recommend general cleaning once a week.
* Clean up spills promptly using a clean cloth, and (we recommend) Bona Hardwood Floor Cleaner (it can be purchased at most grocery stores or Costco).
* Use floor mats at exterior doors to catch most dirt and grit. Use area rugs in high-traffic areas, at the ends of steps, and near doorways. Avoid rubber backing or non-ventilated rugs.
* Use protective pads, caps or felt under furniture. Check these protectors occasionally as they do wear out.
* Examine your floor’s finish so wear is caught early, before complete refinishing is necessary (a pad and recoat is much less expensive).
* Maintain a consistent humidity level year-round in all areas with hardwood flooring. Excessive variations in humidity levels can cause hardwood to swell, shrink, cup, crack, and show gaps between boards. We recommend the use of humidifiers or dehumidifiers in areas where humidity is inconsistent.
What NOT to do:
– Water and hardwood floors do not mix! NEVER wet mop a hardwood floor. You can use a dampened (near dry) mop to clean the floor, but excessive moisture will cause damage. Standing water is BAD–it can dull the finish and damage the wood.
– Never use a cleaner that has wax, ammonia, or oil soaps in it. They will dull the finish and affect the ability to recoat your floor later. Also, if the cleaner has bleach, abrasive chemicals, or acidic materials (including VINEGAR), avoid them. They are not good for your floor!
Protect Your Investment:– Excessive exposure to sunlight will fade or change the shade of your floor and can also damage your floor (like it does our skin). Window treatments are recommended to reduce this exposure.
– Stiletto heels will leave divets in your floor. I know it’s hard to ask a guest to remove her highly-fashionable shoes, but your floor will love you for it!
– Keep your dogs’ nails cut, so when he goes to race after that squirrel in your backyard he doesn’t leave a trail of scratches behind.
So, the moral of this blog post is, if you take good care of your wood floors, they will bring you joy for many, many years to come. Happy cleaning!